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Bionomics receives milestone payment from Genmab for protein successes

Bionomics : 20 February, 2008  (New Product)
Bionomics has successfully completed the pre-clinical testing on the first of eight proteins licensed to $2.6 billion Danish antibody company Genmab, triggering a $1 million milestone payment.
Under the agreement, which was executed in February 2006, Genmab acquired the exclusive worldwide rights to eight proteins identified and characterised by Bionomics using its proprietary Angene angiogenesis platform. Antibodies to these proteins have potential as treatments for cancer and other diseases.

At the time of the agreement, Bionomics received an upfront fee and the $1 million is the first in a series of potential milestone payments upon achieving specified pre-clinical and clinical milestones. Bionomics will also receive milestone payments and royalties on product sales for each product reaching the market.

The $1 million payment has been triggered with the significant progress made in the first stage of evaluation of the licensed proteins. This evaluation strongly supported the potential of a selection of the licensed proteins as antibody targets and development of a therapy to treat pathological angiogenic conditions. This milestone marks commencement of the next phase of the development programme under the collaboration.

'This is a very significant milestone for Bionomics as it validates Bionomics' Angene platform as a source of new treatment modalities for cancer and other conditions involving pathological formation of new blood vessels. It also reinforces for our shareholders the significant commercial potential of our collaboration with Genmab,' said chief executive officer of Bionomics Dr Deborah Rathjen.

'We have been working in close collaboration with Genmab for several years and this latest milestone is a clear validation of the strength of this partnership which aims to bring new antibody-based treatments for cancer to the clinic.'

The chief executive officer of Genmab Lisa N Drakeman, PhD commented: 'We are pleased to reach the next level of development with these targets and look forward to continuing the collaboration with Bionomics.'

Professor Jan G J van de Winkel, PhD, chief scientific officer of Genmab added: 'This milestone has been reached following extensive studies by Genmab on the Bionomics targets. The work we have undertaken has confirmed and extended the work performed by Bionomics, further supporting their potential as new targets for therapeutic antibodies.'

Bionomics has the rights and is actively developing a large number of additional proprietary proteins discovered through its angiogenesis programme, including BNO69.

In addition Bionomics' anti-cancer drug BNC105 will soon commence a Phase 1 clinical trial at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Royal Melbourne Hospital and Western Hospital cancer centres in Melbourne for the treatment of solid tumours including breast, colon and prostate cancers.

BNC105 was identified using the Angene platform. The US Food and Drug Administration accepted bionomics’ Investigational New Drug (IND) submission for BNC105 in November 2007.
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